Turin Brakes Outbursts

Ten years on from the release of their debut, British duo Turin Brakes have pretty much returned to where they started. Gone is the full band sound of 2007's Dark On Fire and new album Outbursts is more reminiscent of those early days when they were one of the much-touted bands at the head of the new acoustic movement that the British music press created. The problem is that while they've been moving backwards, stopping to write a few songs for Take That along the way, the world has been moving forward and the relentless succession of strummed acoustic guitars and earnest lyrics becomes both exhausting and dull. It starts off optimistically enough, with the pressing "Sea Change," which suggests they might have something fresh to offer, but after a couple more songs, they settle down into the preciousness that always made them slightly annoying. It doesn't help that the band's production adds overblown drama to numbers that would have benefited from simpler arrangements. Turin Brakes are now firmly in the same category as Athlete, Snow Patrol and those other bands for people that like their music bland and inoffensive. You know who you are. (Cooking Vinyl)